When Freddy Fore and his wife, Susan, were informed in February that they would have to relocate their Groves restaurant, they were devastated. Several folks who worked and lived in Groves were devastated, too — Fast Freddy’s, which had already relocated once after Hurricane Rita in 2005, had been a lunch landmark in the city for 27 years.
Total Refinery had terminated the restaurant’s lease.
“I just couldn’t believe it — as bad as they wanted us there to start with,” Freddy Fore said.
Fast Freddy’s originally sat in a wooden structure at 3900 Pure Atlantic Road (Highway 366) in Groves, and was beloved by so many Total employees that after the structure was ruined by the hurricane, the refinery invited the restaurant to reopen four blocks up the road in one of their vacant gas station properties. But after the BP oil spills, Fore explained, the refinery was forced to eliminate any miscellaneous risk liabilities — and the property leased to Fast Freddy’s fell into that category.
“We tried like heck to get a place in Groves, but there just wasn’t anything.”
Thankfully, however, there was a vacant location — in Bulldog territory.
“I couldn’t believe we wouldn’t be in Groves anymore, but we needed something that could accommodate what we do,” Susan Fore said of the move.
So they picked up and moved once again, this time to 3113 Nederland Ave. in Nederland, where they got the business up, running and serving their fast food in three weeks — a new record for Fast Freddy himself.
“We’re not slow about anything we do,” Freddy said. Those familiar with Fast Freddy’s will walk into the new location and breath easy to see familiar knick-knacks hanging on the walls, those same old wooden diner booths reinstalled into the walls, the same smells wafting from the kitchen, and of course the same faces. Kiddos who have patronized Freddy’s skateboard shop for 21 years can also rest assured that not only has Freddy re-opened Sk8 Again, but a street-style skatepark is also in the works.
“I’ve wanted a skatepark for 21 years,” Freddy mused.
As far as the menu, you can still get Freddy’s beloved burgers, the legendary Freeloader sandwich, chicken baskets and everything in between — but with the new space and amenities that came with the move, Freddy expanded the menu, as well. And every Thursday and Friday, watch for the blinking yellow light on the marquee by the road. When that light’s blinking, Freddy’s got ribs on.
Fast Freddy’s is a fast-casual barbecue joint with more than a few items that we love, but in his second week open at the new Nederland location, we insist you try his two newest burgers — Nederland’s Big Ned burger with grilled onions and jalapenos, or the Port Neches-Groves’ Wampum burger with fried onions and jalepenos.
If you wear gold or bleed purple, you’ll probably love both burgers, whether you like it or not.